A true-life story of failure, doubt, and redemption played out in the Rays' bullpen, as ball boy R.J. Boggs turned boos into a standing ovation midway through last night's game at Tropicana Field.
It started in the fifth inning, when Boggs's failure to handle a foul grounder led to the ball striking reliever Brandon Gomes in the face:
Rays closer Fernando Rodney ended up retrieving the ball, and pretended to whip it at Boggs for his dereliction of duty. An inning later, Rays relievers weren't taking any chances:
Boggs didn't make this play cleanly, either, though he did manage to keep it from hitting anybody else. But clearly the damage was done; if a bullpen ball boy has lost the faith of his team, what more is there to live for? Redemption, of course. It came three pitches later:
Let's see that again!
Boggs snatched a rocket liner, earning a standing ovation not only from the Tropicana Field crowd but the Rays' bullpen as well. Take notes, A-Rod: this is how you do crisis management.